Of Halloween, Wardrobes & Everyday Masks

I love fall-back weekend. I love standard time, and early darkness, and the early end to all that extra activity that daylight stimulates. Don’t get me wrong – the light has it’s place, and I need it too, but I’m extraordinarily fond of nighttime and the darkness.

A good vampire, I’d make. Probably.

In any case, Happy Belated Halloween to all of you. I left work a couple hours early on Friday and helped Hubby put some decor in the yard, and then Saturday we spent all morning watching it rain on and off, and all afternoon finishing up the yard decor, rain be damned. By 5:30pm, we’d consumed half of our jack-o-lantern pizza and were ready for kiddos. It was kind of disappointing, because we only got 47, all told, and we have a *ton* of candy leftover that will have to go to workplaces or the bar on Weds night – it’s not staying here!

Sunday after the normal grocery shopping and donut consumption rituals, we cleaned up the yard and pulled everything back inside, which only took a couple of hours. Of course the workout room is unusable at the moment, but we’ll spend our workout time tonight cleaning it up and putting everything away. We really need to sort through all of it and give what we’ll never use again away, but I don’t want to spend that much time on it just now. Priorities, you know.

No, I didn’t dress up. I never do…there’s always way too much to do to get the yard ready, and not enough time to costume myself. Story of my life, really – clothes are kind of a pain in the butt, so I tend to stick with a few basic styles and wear those over and over. It’s boring, but it’s easy, and when you love mornings as much as I do (*ahem*), you don’t want to be making a whole lot of decisions before breakfast.

But like I said, it’s boring. So Friday night, just after payday and before I paid bills (living dangerously!), I went shopping online. You have to understand – shopping for clothes in any way, shape or form, is really my least favorite activity. So I have to force myself, even online (t-shirts are exempt. It’s embarrassing how fast I’ll click “buy now” on a fun or funny t-shirt). Several hours later, I hit the confirm order button on four new (all different) light sweaters (so wearable in 3 seasons), a new pair of ankle boots suitable for winter, and a new pair of slippers (mine have been dead and gone for nearly a year – I really needed a new pair).

Clothes really shouldn’t cost so much, dang it. But the majority of my current wardrobe is nearly a decade old. It’s all classic, so it doesn’t go out of style, but a lot of it’s faded and looking pretty worn, so I need to make a concentrated effort to turn most of it over a piece or two at a time. Thank God for online shopping. If I had to actually go to the store, it wouldn’t happen at all.

Of course with the costuming and my own wardrobe “issues”, it kind of made me think about masks and costumes and presenting different parts of our personality as dominant depending on who we’re with and what context we’re currently in. My wardrobes for work and “everyday” life rarely cross…aside from Fridays when dress is generally more casual (though I’m still careful about what shirts I wear – no t-shirts with quippy-yet-mildly insulting quotes on the front, of course). I was thinking that my own rather reserved “work mask” was just that…something for work, but in thinking about it further, it’s really not. It’s more of my “other people” mask, whether they’re at work or not, and no matter what clothing I happen to be wearing at the time. Truth is, it takes a long time before I trust people enough to open up past that “cool & reserved” persona, and that’s true everywhere, not just with people I work with/around.

The realization was kind of a relief, honestly. I am who I am, no matter where I am. And that’s how it should be.

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